As spring takes me back to my core and my soul unwinds, a feeling missed over winter brings tears that are hopeful, joyful, and sustaining. Where or where did it go over this brutal winter, so desperate for sleep that after using a low dose narcotic for 30 years so sparingly, a slight addiction to it occurred causing a headache if not taken every other day.

Scared, googling how to wean off xanax, it can be dangerous- but for those on much greater doses. It needs to be weaned off gradually which by night three the dose has been halved, and in a week or so I’ll be off completely. There is that car ride to my son’s coming up in April which rattles me so, about a 6 hour drive.

But for now, sleep comes, partly because of spring’s arrival, but maybe more so because the adult in me took hold and said what’s what. Stay in bed, you will sleep, calming that hyper restlessness that has invaded my life since the age of 8.

Samuel says he does the same with his hip pain medication. Though not a narcotic it does have side effects such as weight gain and this little man looks like Santa Claus. He knows how much I beat myself as I hang my head in tears and said, “I feel like such a shit.”

But his words were true. We reach for what we need, I’m not a failure, just a woman working through a difficult winter which might have an up side. There might be a reason to my restlessness in the night and the deep pain, it could be a huge leap of growth. But first it is important to name the pain before forgiving it.

Speaking up about my pain to my son was the hardest thing yet. Making mistakes while raising him caused me put up with treatment by both of them other parents would immediately speak up about with a grown child and his partner. As weight came off, using food for physical hunger instead of emotional, it became necessary to speak of the pain, of the wrongs committed against me unfairly that were cruel. And that only happened after forgiving myself for mistakes made, something that also needs forgiving as it is revisited each time.

Then? To forgive them. Not much will change on their end as younger people live their lives without the time to think so much, and just live it. But on my end, forgiveness, which must be revisited repeatedly, opens my internal world with fresh air and I become myself again.

Getting off even a low dose of a narcotic is helped by committing to meditation and doing it twice daily, though in the afternoon my eyes close sleepily. For months after starting pot oil meditation stopped as the oil helped quell anxiety and so did the increased amount of walking. Not meditating after 20 years wasn’t a good choice.

There is good reason why these life saving methods should be incorporated daily, as this simple half hour brings me back inside myself. It’s not about changing the world, just being in it whole, and that can makes changes that ripple on farther than one might expect. It begins within.

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